Bruce Ajari: Presentation is key to angling success |

Bruce Ajari: Presentation is key to angling success

As Iand#8217;ve discussed before, finding the right fly is critical to oneand#8217;s success. However, the right fly alone will not guarantee success. The most important element of success is properly presenting the fly and#8212; presentation.

Presentation is making the fly appear like the natural that it is intended to represent. Once you have determined the proper fly pattern, you must make it look like the natural.

This requires you to learn quite a bit about the troutand#8217;s diet, and learn about their behavior. There are many good books, articles and DVDs on the subject. Perhaps the best one is Ralph Cutterand#8217;s and#8220;Bugs of the Underworld.and#8221;

This DVD will help you to become a better fly fisherman by understanding the movement of the very aquatic insects that you are trying to represent. This is a high-quality DVD and it shows insects in their natural environment.

Cutter goes underwater to film this incredible DVD. The DVD is available at or by going directly to the Cutterand#8217;s, California School of Fly Fishing website at

Knowing how to imitate the movements of the aquatic insect you are trying to represent is critical to an anglerand#8217;s success. Once you have figured out the proper fly to use, you have to make sure how you want to fish it. Will you use an active retrieve, dead-drift the offering or swing it?

While learning through books is good, there is no substitute for observation.

On a recent trip to one of our favorite lakes a few weeks ago I was fishing a scud pattern. I happened to be fishing with a stripping basket, which I frequently do when fishing from shore on lakes to assist my casting, but more importantly to keep my fly line clean.

When wading in deeply I noticed that water had partially filled the basket and I had some tiny scuds in the water. I watched them for a few moments and was reminded that they moved fairly quickly in short spurts.

I then applied what I had seen and was immediately rewarded with a nice rainbow on the end of my line. I had a very successful afternoon fishing this fly, primarily because I was able to imitate the behavior of the natural.

Presentation is by far the most important element in fly fishing. Knowing how to do so can make you a very successful angler.

I had a great piece of advice early in my fly fishing life. I was told by a veteran angler to set the rod down every once and awhile and just observe what is going on in the water. Following this advice certainly made me a better angler.

It will do the same for you. The combination of knowledge and observation are key elements to success.

and#8212; Bruce Ajari is a Truckee resident and regular fishing columnist for the Sierra Sun and other area newspapers.

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